"It's no skin off my nose": Why people take part in qualitative research

Elizabeth Peel*, Odette Parry, Margaret Douglas, Julia Lawton

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

In this article, the authors analyze participants' accounts of why they took part in a repeat-interview study exploring newly diagnosed patients' perceptions of diabetes service provision in Lothian, Scotland. The study involved three semistructured in-depth interviews with each patient (N = 40), which spanned a year. The authors provide a thematic discursive analysis of responses to the question, Can I ask you what made you decide to part in the study and why you've stayed involved over the past year? The main themes are (a) recruitment within health contexts ("the nurse said it would help"), (b) altruism ("if it can help somebody"), (c) qualitative research being seen as inherently innocuous ("nothing to lose"), and (d) therapeutic aspects of interviewing ("getting it off my chest"). The analysis contributes both to the qualitative literature about generic research participation and to a germinal literature exploring qualitative health research participation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1335-1349
Number of pages15
JournalQualitative Health Research
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2006

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Diabetes
  • Qualitative research
  • Repeat interviews
  • Research participation


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